Gabriella Tozser, RMT
Registered Massage Therapist
Most of my family and friends know me as an avid hiker who likes to get lost in the forest trails from sunrise to sunset. I love hiking because it is a very relaxing hobby and puts my mind into a meditation like state. A good hike has many benefits in addition to the beautiful scenery. I try to go at least two or three times a month whenever the weather is permitting. While I struggle to go to a gym and lift weights or swim in the local pool, I am more motivated and energized being in the middle of a forest.
Moving my legs one step at a time, I know I will be amazed once again with the beauty of the trails. I often don’t notice that hours pass by as I go my own pace and observe as much as I can along the way. I pass along little creeks and lakes surrounded by magnificent cedars and pine trees. At the lookout, I enjoy the view of the rolling hills and I feel connected to a higher-self.
In addition to the beautiful visuals, I gain better blood circulation because I’m constantly moving and pumping blood into all of my muscles and tissues, increasing oxygen to every square inch of my body and lowering the risks of high blood pressure and diabetes. My lungs feel clearer as I breathe the fresh air, and my vitamin D level increases as I soak up the sunshine. My mood is elevated and hopeful when I concentrate on the breathtaking surroundings, leaving all my worries behind as I quicken my step. I feel pleasantly tired with some muscle soreness, which is normal because I am building up muscle cells and getting stronger! Don’t forget the calories I burn climbing up to the top of each hill.
When I arrive back to my car, I make sure that I follow up my walk with a nice 15 minute stretch for my legs, arms, neck, and shoulders. Stretching also helps with the drive home. When I arrive home, the benefits of my adventurous day are still adding up. I know I will have a goodnight sleep and wake up rested and energized for days. I even notice that my endurance level at work improves. Most importantly, I can finally have my favourite chocolate treat! I hope you will put your hiking boots on too this spring and for all the good weather that is yet to come.
Many blessed and healthy hikes to you,
P.S. One of my favourite hikes is in Mono Cliffs, part of the Bruce trail system in Mono Provincial Park near Orangeville. Find more info at www.ontarioparks.com